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Irish Judge Slammed For "Offensive" And "Inappropriate" Comments About Travelling Community

By Darragh Berry

April 28, 2018 at 1:40pm


The Irish Independent is reporting that a Judge in Sligo has been slammed after his use of certain phrases aimed at the Travelling Community. 

The Judge in question described breaks out at Traveller Funerals as a "culture of savagery” that had to be “littered with gardaí.”

He asked a prominent member of the Travelling Community where the "absolute scandal" comes from as several members of the Travelling community were before the court charged with assault which was from an incident at a mass in early 2017.

“What is in the culture that causes those problems? Is it cultural or alcohol? Why do vendettas emerge at funerals?

“Why is there need for one hundred gardaí at a funeral?”

“You were born into it, you know it, the culture,”

“Why is there need for that kind of savagery? Can you help me in that. Why is it a know feature of Traveller births, deaths and marriages? I do not understand where this violence comes from," the Judge said. 

Co-Director of Pavee Point Traveller and Roma Centre, Martin Collins, said that the Travelling Community took great offence to these comments.

“These comments are offensive, inappropriate and unacceptable from anyone – but particularly a judge, given their status in society. Such comments legitimise and give licence to others to express similar statements.

"These comments stereotype Travellers as inherently violent which is completely unfair as there are many events that take place in the Traveller community where there is no violence.   

"The Judge asks about the numbers of gardaí that sometimes attend Traveller funerals and I would suggest that this is done on the assumption that there will be violence – which is prejudice in itself."

"No ethnic group is immune to criminal activity."

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